What we're about

Welcome to Hiking With Dean, the largest and most popular hiking group in the country and 2nd largest in the world (after Outdooraholics London Hiking)*. I have personally led almost 800 hikes logging over 100,000 hiker-miles. Be sure to visit our web site at https://www.meetuphikes.com/ .

Our hikes are based upon a simple philosophy: You should be able go out your front door and within a few minutes be on trails winding your way through the local wilderness. Thus, most of our hikes are found in the Santa Monica Mountains, Santa Susana Mountains, Simi Hills and Conejo Valley.

We are not a beginner hiking group, but I do schedule beginner hikes sometimes and some hikes do have a beginner option. Be sure to read the hike descriptions and ask questions if you have any. Most of our hikes are moderate to strenuous. Because of my own limitations we'll refrain from any serious rock climbing and avoid precarious ledges and ridges. But we do avoid fire roads when we can.

Our hiking group is different from the others. Instead of looking through Alltrails and hiking books for a hike, I look through my collection of old maps and aerials for forgotten ranch roads and trails that I can add to the book hikes. Once upon a time our "open space" was home to ranchers, farmers, movie sets, homesteaders, and other characters that have left behind their marks for us to discover and uncover.

Become a HWD VIP. Its not required to join, but to help support the group we welcome and appreciate your gift of an annual $15.00 As an HWD donor member you become a HWD VIP (see https://www.meetuphikes.com/vip-circle/ ) with many benefits not available in other groups, for example, breakfast at the trail head, free prizes and other goodies, exclusive outings, no waiting lists, etc. Sounds better than the usual "please donate" other groups use, doesn't it? For more information please visit the VIP web site at https://www.meetuphikes.com/vip-circle/

*HWD has the largest membership per leader

HIKE RATINGS GUIDE

The following ratings are to be used as a general guideline to determine the difficulty of a hike, both by the Organizer/Host, and the prospective participants. There are no hard and fast rules.

EASY: Dayhikes covering mostly level terrain, no difficult trail, generally less than five miles total.

MEDIUM: Dayhikes covering a variety of terrain, with a few steep or difficult areas, but no prolonged steep grades or difficult terrain, and generally between five and ten miles in length total (or shorter hikes with more difficult terrain), or covering terrain of any length where no trail exists (a bushwhack hike).

DIFFICULT: Longer dayhikes up to ten miles and more total length, and/or covering terrain that contains prolonged steep or difficult stretches (a short hike could be rated difficult if the terrain really is such), or a longer bushwhack hike covering difficult terrain.

THE RULES

• Don't be a flake by signing up and not showing up

• No dogs unless indicated in hike description (our special dog-friendly hikes)

The following is not a rule, but if you want to avoid being a victim of sarcastic remarks do not ask how long a hike is going to take. Hint: An eight mile hike takes about twice as long as a four mile hike.

Please, no dogs unless otherwise indicated in hike description.

Proud Member of:

Santa Monica Mountains Trails Council
California State Parks Foundation
The Mountains Restoration Trust
Montecito Trails Foundation
Conejo Open Space Foundation

Read about What's On TheHome Page?

By joining you agree to the Assumption of Risk and Liability Waiver

A Few Testimonials

Dean is a wonderful leader. He really paid attention to the needs of the group. He facilitated the group, but didn't control the group. I will attend again -- Kimmy

If Dean [one of the original SoCal Meetup-ers mind you] would ever write a book on hiking SoCal [as he rightfully should] it would be a must-buy. Dean is both knowledgeable and adventurous. Conscientious and kind. I would have no problem hiking with Dean anywhere. - Les

Dean is a great hike leader. He knows the trails. — Lydia

The group leader Dean is very conscious of all of us hikers as a group. We all get to trek at our own pace comfortably and still stay together.He's got an agenda planned with an extra twist on where we are going to hike. — elyse

Dean is an excellent group leader who knows the trails very well. He is always looking out for the welfare of his hikers. The group attracts some of the most pleasant people you can hope to meet. — Bruce

What can I say? This group ROCKS!!! Some of the friendliest people I have met and the Organizer, Dean is a sweetheart! - Sara

Dean has organized the best group of hikers who like to hike and have fun. — Blake

Dean is extremely knowledgeable and serves up a seemingly endless array of hikes. A very pleasant and down-to-earth group of people who are easy to get to know ... and like — Drew

Dean is a strong hike leader with a friendly and outgoing group of people who know how to have fun while hiking - Laura

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Upcoming events (4+)

Caballero Canyon - Gizmo Peak Loop - Sol Y Luna for Lunch

Caballero Canyon

Join us for a short but heart-pounding hike through the old stomping grounds of Edgar Rice Burroughs in Caballero Canyon. We'll take the Dinosaur Egg Trail to Mulholland, head up for a snack on Gizmo Peak, and return to car via the Caballero Canyon Trail

Hike is about 4 miles with over 1,000' total ascent and is rated DIFFICULT due to terrain. See the hike rating guide at https://www.hikingwithdean.com/hike-rating-guide/

Post hike lunch is down the street at

Sol Y Luna
19601 Ventura Blvd
Tarzana California[masked]

Meet at the Caballero Canyon trailhead on Reseda Bl. From the 101 Freeway, exit at Reseda Blvd and turn south. Drive for about two miles. There is parking on both sides of the street; the trailhead is on the left across the street from Braemar Country club

The Organizers and members of Hiking With Dean are not professional leaders, guides, or mountaineers. The function of the member or organizer is only to organize the trip. Each person who shows up for a trip/meetup (and their guest or guests) is responsible for his or her own safety. By attending a hike, or any other event organized by this group, you are acknowledging that you and any guests that you bring are aware of the risks, dangers and hazards associated with the activity and freely accept and fully assume all such risks, dangers and hazards, and further agree to release and discharge the Organizers, Members of the Hiking With Dean Meetup Group from and against any and all liability arising from your participation in the group activities per our ASSUMPTION OF RISK AND LIABILITY WAIVER and Section 6.2 of the Meetup.com Terms of Service.

12th Annual Chatsworth Halloween Hike - Day Version

Twin Lakes

We’ve been doing this one in Chatsworth since 2009, and is one of our most popular hikes. It’s the scariest hike this side of Transylvania!

👉 See https://www.hikingwithdean.com/event/12th-annual-chatsworth-halloween-hike/ for details

HIKE IS ABOUT 5 MILES WITH ABOUT 1000 FT TOTAL ASCENT AND IS RATED MEDIUM. SEE THE HIKE RATING GUIDE at https://www.hikingwithdean.com/hike-rating-guide/

See night version here: https://www.hikingwithdean.com/event/12th-annual-chatsworth-halloween-hike-night-version/

The Organizers and members in this group are not professional leaders, guides, or mountaineers. The function of the member or organizer is only to organize the trip. Each person who shows up for a trip/meetup (and their guest or guests) is responsible for his or her own safety. By attending a hike, or any other event organized by this group, you are acknowledging that you and any guests that you bring are aware of the risks, dangers and hazards associated with the activity and freely accept and fully assume all such risks, dangers and hazards, and further agree to release and discharge the Organizers, Members of the Hiking With Dean Meetup Group from and against any and all liability arising from your participation in the group activities per the ASSUMPTION OF RISK AND LIABILITY WAIVER at https://www.hikingwithdean.com/liability-waiver/ and Section 6.2 of the Meetup.com Terms of Service.

🎃💀12th Annual Chatsworth Halloween Hike ☠ Night Version 👻

We've been doing this one in Chatsworth/Twin Lakes since 2009. It's the scariest hike this side of Transylvania!

This will be a potluck/social event so bring some booze, edibles, etc to share

Due to ongoing development in the area our exact path is unknown at this time, but I estimate it to be about 4 miles with 700' elevation gain.

NO WHITE LIGHTS -- red and green only. If you are unable to hike at night without a white light, don't sign up -- join us for the day version.

👉See detailed hike description here: https://www.hikingwithdean.com/event/12th-annual-chatsworth-halloween-hike-night-version/

Trail statistics are approximate. For safety purposes always assume they are underestimated. But don’t be disappointed if they are overestimated. Bring more water and snacks than you think you’ll need.

Trail descriptions are based on previous hikes. Current conditions are unknown until arrival. Expect the unexpected and plan accordingly.

The Organizers and members in this group are not professional leaders, guides, or mountaineers. The function of the member or organizer is only to organize the trip. Each person who shows up for a trip/meetup (and their guest or guests) is responsible for his or her own safety. By attending a hike, or any other event organized by this group, you are acknowledging that you and any guests that you bring are aware of the risks, dangers and hazards associated with the activity and freely accept and fully assume all such risks, dangers and hazards, and further agree to release and discharge the Organizers, Members of the Hiking With Dean Meetup Group from and against any and all liability arising from your participation in the group activities per the ASSUMPTION OF RISK AND LIABILITY WAIVER.

V.I.P. Hike and Wine Tasting

Calabasas

This hike is for V.I.P. Club members only. If you are not a member you can join here: https://www.hikingwithdean.com/vip-circle/

Hike will be about 8 miles with 2,000 ft total ascent and require some minor bouldering/rock scrambling (Class 0.5 - 1.0).

After the hike we'll head over to a local Italian restaurant for our wine tasting. Bring a bottle of your favorite wine and I will pay the corkage fee.

👉Details and RSVP here: https://www.hikingwithdean.com/vip-hike-list/

Trail statistics are approximate. For safety purposes always assume they are underestimated. But don’t be disappointed if they are overestimated. Bring more water and snacks than you think you’ll need.

Trail descriptions are based on previous hikes. Current conditions are unknown until arrival. Expect the unexpected and plan accordingly.

The Organizers and members in this group are not professional leaders, guides, or mountaineers. The function of the member or organizer is only to organize the trip. Each person who shows up for a trip/meetup (and their guest or guests) is responsible for his or her own safety. By attending a hike, or any other event organized by this group, you are acknowledging that you and any guests that you bring are aware of the risks, dangers and hazards associated with the activity and freely accept and fully assume all such risks, dangers and hazards, and further agree to release and discharge the Organizers, Members of the Hiking With Dean Meetup Group from and against any and all liability arising from your participation in the group activities per the ASSUMPTION OF RISK AND LIABILITY WAIVER.

Past events (931)

Santa Maria Canyon - Summer Hill Ranch Loop

Summit Pointe Estates - HWD

Photos (45,956)